March 4, 2006

Episode Five: The Rick Rubin Factor

Remember when Aerosmith and Run DMC collaborated for "Walk This Way"? That was Rick Rubin's doing. Rubin started as a hip-hop producer but has since branched out. The following covers are albums he's produced. Great album covers not necessarily because of Rick Rubin, but great albums because of him. Rubin has made a living of bringing the best out of an artist by reducing them to the musician/artist that they started as. He helped redefine and revive Johnny Cash's career. He helped the Chili Peppers get loud by first getting quiet. His work on Tom Petty's Wildflowers album, The Black Crowes' Shake Your Money Maker, Weezer's Make Believe, and even on Jay-Z's Black Album have all been critically praised. You can look ahead to another Rubin produced Chili Peppers album, an album of unreleased Johnny Cash tracks, as well as producing Justin Timberlake's, Metallica's, and Kid Rock's next albums.

LL Cool J, Radio (1985)

The Beastie Boys, Licensed to Ill (1986)

Red Hot Chili Peppers, Blood Sugar Sex Magik (1991), Californication (1999), By The Way [Julian Schnabel] (2002)

Johhny Cash, American Recordings (1994), Unchained (1996), Solitary Man (2000), The Man Comes Around (2002)

Shakira, Oral Fixation Vol. 2 (2005)

Neil Diamond, 12 Songs (2005)

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